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Calculating required server capacity

Updated: October 4, 2007

Applies To: Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2

Use the estimated bandwidth requirement and the estimated audience volume to determine how much capacity your network and server system must have to accommodate demand.

To estimate the total required server capacity, multiply the required bit rate per user by the estimated audience volume. The actual capacity of a given server will vary from computer to computer.

The following table demonstrates the need for additional server capacity as the number of users and content bit rate increases.


Bit rate of stream (Kbps) Type of network connection Number of concurrent users per server

28.8 (20 actual)

Telephone modem


56.6 (33 actual)

Telephone modem








For example, if online training content is delivered at a bit rate of 300 Kbps to 500 concurrent users, the server system and network must be capable of handling 150 megabits per second. If the server meets the minimum requirements for running Windows Media Services, at least six Windows Media servers would be required to service this demand.

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